United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division
ENTRY DENYING PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS AND
DIRECTING ENTRY OF FINAL JUDGMENT
WALTON PRATT, JUDGE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
petition of Dillion Wichman (“Wichman”) for a
writ of habeas corpus challenges a prison disciplinary
proceeding identified as No. JCU 17-09-0012. For the reasons
explained in this Entry, Mr. Wichman's habeas petition is
in Indiana custody may not be deprived of good-time credits,
Cochran v. Buss, 381 F.3d 637, 639 (7th Cir. 2004)
(per curiam), or of credit-earning class, Montgomery v.
Anderson, 262 F.3d 641, 644-45 (7th Cir. 2001), without
due process. The due process requirement is satisfied with
the issuance of advance written notice of the charges, a
limited opportunity to present evidence to an impartial
decision-maker, a written statement articulating the reasons
for the disciplinary action and the evidence justifying it,
and “some evidence in the record” to support the
finding of guilt. Superintendent, Mass. Corr. Inst. v.
Hill, 472 U.S. 445, 454 (1985); Wolff v.
McDonnell, 418 U.S. 539, 570-71 (1974); Piggie v.
Cotton, 344 F.3d 674, 677 (7th Cir. 2003); Webb v.
Anderson, 224 F.3d 649, 652 (7th Cir. 2000).
The Disciplinary Proceeding
September 6, 2017, Sergeant Mitchell Young issued a Report of
Conduct charging Wichman with possession of a cell phone in
violation of Code A-121. The Report of Conduct states:
On 09-6-2017, I Sergeant Young the Facility Investigator, at
approximately 0900 had reason to believe that there was a
cell phone hidden in Offender Wichman, Dillion #263994
mattress. Offender Wichman's bunk area and mattress was
searched. There was a small hole in the pillow area of the
mattress. Upon first searching the mattress nothing was
found. A cell scence was used by laying it across two chairs
and Offender Wichman's mattress was slid underneath. The
cell scence buzzed indicating that there was another object
inside the mattress. Upon further search a cell phone was
found inside in the built in pillow area. It was in the
mattress stuffing with extra stuffing sewn around it.
Stephen Jeter completed an Incident Report Form, which
On 09/6/2017 at approximately 0930 while assisting Sgt
Mitchell Young with a search of offender Wichman, Dillion
#263994 mattress I witnessed Sgt Young find a small hole in
the pillow area of the mattress and once he inspected it
further there was further internal holes and manipulated
stuffing with a cell phone inside. End of statement.
was first notified of the charge on September 6, 2017, when
he was served with the Report of Conduct and the Notice of
Disciplinary Hearing (Screening Report). The Screening
Officer noted that Wichman requested a statement from
offender Ebb Howard as well as the cell phone. On September
12, 2017, Wichman was screened again, and he again requested
a statement from Ebb Howard and photos of the cell phone and
mattress. Offender Howard submitted a statement that,
“I never seen any cell phone use by offender
Wichman.” Wichman produced a statement from JCU
Receiving Officer Wassen that states:
Mattresses are placed in the dorm as needed and replaced as
needed. Mattresses are only issued on arrival if their bunk
does not already have a mattress. We currently do not have a
bunk inspection for mattresses. Bunks are fitted with
mattresses as needed.
Hearing Officer conducted a disciplinary hearing on September
22, 2017, and noted that Wichman stated, “On 09/6/2017
I was given a hearing date of 9/7/2017 and not notified of a
postponement and the cell sense was used on the walls before
going to my dorm and bed area. Anyone could have put their
mattress on my bunk. They are not assigned to us at
JCU.” The Hearing Officer then determined that Wichman
had violated Code A-121, stating, “The cell phone in
question was sewn into the mattress that Wichman had on his
bunk. The cell phone even had charge on it to turn it on
along with a cell phone charger. Offenders are responsible
for their living area.” The sanctions imposed included
the deprivation of 180 days of earned credit time and the
demotion from credit class I to credit class II.
filed an appeal to the Facility Head, who modified the
sanction to a loss of 60 days of earned credit time and the
demotion of one credit class. Wichman then appealed to the
Final Review Authority, who denied it on November 28, 2017